- The Washington Times - Wednesday, March 15, 2017

President Trump said Wednesday that MSNBC host Rachel Maddow showing his 2005 federal tax return on her show was “illegal” and a “disgrace.”

The president said he did not know where Ms. Maddow and investigative reporter David Cay Johnston obtained the two-page tax return, which showed Mr. Trump earned more than $150 million and paid $38 million in federal income taxes in 2005.

“I have no idea where they got it. But it is illegal and you’re not supposed to have it,” he said in an interview with Fox News’s Tucker Carlson scheduled to air Wednesday night.

The news channel aired an excerpt of the interview in which Mr. Trump addressed the leak of his tax return to Mr. Johnson and MSNBC.

“It’s not supposed to be leaked,” he said. “It certainly is not an embarrassing tax return at all. But it is an illegal thing. They’ve been doing it. They’ve done it before. I think it is a disgrace.”

Mr. Trump’s critics, including the Democratic National Committee, have alleged that Mr. Trump leaked the tax return himself.

Mr. Trump’s refusal to release his most recent tax returns during the campaign, as is the tradition for presidential candidates, has fueled intense interest in the content of his tax returns and speculation that he is hiding something.

“The only reason not to release his returns is to hide what’s in them such as financial connections with Russian oligarchs and the Kremlin,” DNC senior adviser Zac Petkanas said shortly after the 2005 tax return was presented on Ms. Maddow’s show Tuesday night.

• S.A. Miller can be reached at smiller@washingtontimes.com.

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